Not wanting to sound too obvious I thought I would start off the morning by pointing out my naive view that it is tough to figure out what’s going on with the market right now. I mean futures this early in the morning are flat (which might change by gametime) but while recent market activity does not seem to be too exciting, things are certainly not as scary as they were during the early months of the year.
The recent employment report appeared to show we are not in recession (despite the claims of a few well-known money managers) but it also hinted that the Fed will have a much more difficult time slowing down our economic train in order to reduce inflation … if that’s what their main goal happens to be.
But there is one worrisome item that I read … at least it is something to pay attention to … and that refers to today’s similarities with the 1973/1974 time period … as pointed out in a Bloomberg article this morning. For those unaware, this timeframe was quite problematic both for our economy and especially for stocks … and the parallels pointed out in the article appear to be quite similar to what we see and hear at this very moment.
Sounding similar to recent comments by our present administration, in the State of the Union address of 1974 President Nixon said “there will be no recession in the United States of America” … but good numbers regarding jobs and manufacturing activity soon reversed … a very severe recession started … and lasted until March of 1975.
Of main concern today is the reminder that we are often told the Fed is always late to the game and we are left wondering how another boost in interest rates will affect the American consumer and, directly, our economy. We can only hope this is not the same as it was almost 50 years ago. The problem of course is … as they say … “hope is not a strategy” … and it will take some time before we see if attempts to safely navigate us through the icebergs prove successful.
Sorry to sound as if I’m on a soapbox today as I’m actually dictating this verbally as I prepare to get on a train amid foreign-language loudspeaker announcements that I am barely able to comprehend.
In regard to the articles included below, my favorite is the last one … as is normally the case.
One of the biggest problems faced as we age … affecting our health and well-being … is loneliness … as it is always good to have someone else around. One guy recognized this, saw an opporunity and rents himself out as … well … someone to be around. Speaking? Conversing? Communicating in any way? Not seen as important … he can be on his iPhone the entire time … as just being there is what matters.
Of course, I made the mistake of sharing the story of the man who gets paid for doing absolutely nothing with Rich who works with me.
He was quick to share his view that I’ve been doing the same thing for years.
Have a great day,
Joseph G. Witthohn, CFA
Emerald Asset Management PA, LLC
610 Freedom Business Center Drive
King of Prussia, PA 19406
cell: (856) 625-7915